Monday, March 1, 2010

The Benefits of Becoming a Fan of FarmVille

Farmville Fans

If you play FarmVille, you’ve probably seen the little reminders and encouragements all over your game screen encouraging you to become a Fan of the application. It’s pretty common for people to dismiss this as a silly undertaking, but more and more, there are some distinct advantages of becoming a Fan of FarmVille.

What it Means to Be a Fan

In order to become a Fan of FarmVille, all you have to do is go to the official FarmVille page and click on the Become a Fan link. This will automatically add FarmVille to your list of Pages on your Profile, and will allow posts from the FarmVille page to show up in your Live Feed. This may sound like a hassle, but the posts that FarmVille puts up are no more inconvenient than the dozens of other FarmVille posts that your friends put up every day. And they’re at least as helpful.

Tips and Info

These FarmVille posts mainly consist of updates about new features that will be added to the game soon. There will also occasionally be links to other sources of information, like the weekly Podcasts, that can help to keep you updated on the numerous new developments in the game and how to properly take advantage of them. Also, if you’re a Fan of FarmVille, you’ll know that any offers that you see for free specialty items or Farm Cash giveaways on other sites are not officially sanctioned.

For Fans Only

There have also recently been some special benefits available for Fans of FarmVille only. These benefits often consist of an opportunity to try out a new crop or other feature before it is released to the FarmVille population as a whole. Recent early access items include Super Pumpkins and the 24 x 24 land expansion. Not only are these special release items cool just to have access to, they are also usually more beneficial in a variety of ways than the items available to the general FarmVille population.

For example, Super Pumpkins, which FarmVille released to celebrate the fact that they had topped 15 million fans on their Facebook page, had a greater overall earnings and experience point profile than most other crops available in the game. This means that the Fans who had access to the Super Pumpkins for longer gained a much greater bonus than those players who weren’t fans and had a shorter window for planting this crop.

Special Items

Being a Fan of FarmVille also gives you the opportunity to send special gifts and to receive other updates and information that players who aren’t Fans are not privy to. You can even have FarmVille send you email updates to let you know when your crops are ready for harvesting so that you don’t have to worry about keeping track of this yourself. As you can see, there really is no reason not to become a Fan of FarmVille – you’ll be able to get ahead in the game without expending any extra effort. What could be better than that?


Sunday, February 28, 2010

Everything You Need to Know About Horse Stables in FarmVille

Farmville Horse Stables

Many ardent FarmVille players have been begging for the addition of Horse Stables for quite some time. Horses just take up so much space on your farm, so having a lot of them can really limit your ability to undertake some more profitable endeavors or put up some larger buildings. No matter how large a farm you get, you’re still going to run out of space eventually, so having a Horse Stable is a huge plus for players at every level.

Conserving Space, Saving Time

Just like Chicken Coops and Dairy Farms, Horse Stables can hold 20 horses. While they are pretty large buildings themselves, the stables still take up much less space than 20 horses do. Plus, the stables have the added bonus of allowing you to harvest from all of these horses at once. That can save a ton of time, especially if you still have a bunch of goats, pigs, sheep and other animals that have to be harvested from individually.

Getting Started

Your Horse Stable is actually free to get started – that is, you’ll find the frame in your gift box when you log into the game. Before you set it up, though, you may have to clear some space. The stable takes up about as much space as 6 plowed plots of land, so make sure you have at least that much room free before you take it out of your gift box.

Just placing the frame of the Horse Stable on your land isn’t enough, however. In order to complete the construction, you’re going to have to gather a significant number of materials. You do start out with one brick, but you’ll need 10 each of bricks, wooden boards, harnesses, horseshoes and nails to complete your stable, and there are a couple of ways that you can get your hands on these.


The preferable method for obtaining your building materials is as gifts from your FarmVille neighbors. Each day, a couple of these building materials will be available as free gifts that you can send to your neighbors and that they can send to you. The specific items listed here will change from time to time, so it’ll be important to get what you need when it’s available.

If you really want to give yourself the best chance of getting all of your building materials as gifts, you may want to post an announcement on your wall asking your friends for specific items. As long as you have a significant number of neighbors, though, you shouldn’t have too much trouble gathering up the items you need. Also, whatever items you don’t manage to collect as gifts, you can purchase from the market for 1 Farm Cash each.

Announcing Your Construction

When you set up your stable, you’ll have the opportunity to post an announcement on your wall letting your friends know what you’re up to and giving them the option of lending a hand. If they take you up on your offer, they’ll receive 100 coins, but there’s really no benefit to you. It’s certainly the neighborly thing to do, though, and your neighbors will appreciate the opportunity to pick up the bonus.


The Ins and Outs of FarmVille Collections

Farmville Collections Guide

Collections are a relatively new addition to the intricacies of life in FarmVille. While completing Collections is not vital to your ability to succeed at the game, it does allow you to pick up some nice bonuses. There are 5 Collections available at the moment, and it’s likely new ones will be added in the future.

Your Options

Right now, you have to opportunity to complete the Gardening Tools Collection, the Country Kitsch Collection, the Bugs Collection, the Butterfly Collection and the Feather Collection. Each Collection is made up of 6 separate items, and you’ll need at least one of each before you can trade in a collection and receive your bonus.

The items in each Collection also fall into 3 separate categories – Common, Uncommon and Rare. As their name implies, the Rare items will be the most difficult to find, the Common ones the easiest and so forth. Also, by allowing your cursor to hover over each item, you can pick up a hint on where to find each type of collectible.

Gathering Items

Most of the items in these Collections can be found as you go about your daily farm tasks. Some are hidden on your farm, while you’ll only be able to uncover some others when you’re helping out on your friends’ farms. You can also send and receive collectibles as gifts, so be sure to let your friends know if there are some specific items you’re looking for. They just may be able to send one your way.

Once you complete a collection, you’ll have the option of posting an announcement of your accomplishment on your wall. Far from simply an exercise in vanity, this announcement will also be an opportunity for your friends to pick up a random item from the same collection that you’ve just completed.

And just as you should be sure to post these announcements at every opportunity to help your friends complete their collections, you should also be sure not to forget to keep your eyes open for them yourself. These posts are an invaluable resource when you’re trying to complete collections, so be sure to pick up your free random collectible every time one of your friends completes a collection.

Multiple Collections

Of course, as you gather collectibles from various sources, you’ll often wind up with duplicate items. There’s nothing wrong with this, however. You can actually hold up to 10 of each item, and you can complete each Collection many times over. So hold onto your doubles and try to direct your energies towards finding more of the items you have less of.

Bonus Options

Of course, there wouldn’t be much point in expending a bunch of energy to complete these Collections if you didn’t get something out of it. So you’ll be happy to know that completing a Collection actually gives you the opportunity to pick up either 250 experience points, 5,000 coins or 5 tanks of fuel. There really is no right reward to pick – your priorities at the moment will determine which one is more beneficial to you.


Wednesday, February 17, 2010

How To Get The Farmville Hot Rod Tractor

Farmville Secrets

A Hot Rod Tractor is a great asset to have when you’re working the fields in FarmVille. It allows you to plow 9 plots at a time instead of a measly four that the regular tractor can handle, saving you a bunch of time and energy. This is an especially useful asset when you have a large farm with seemingly endless fields to plant.

How to Get Your Tractor

As with many of the specialty items in FarmVille, you can purchase the Hot Rod tractor in one of two ways. Once you reach level 12, you’ll have the option to purchase this item for 55 Farm Cash. However, if you’d like to be able to purchase your tractor with coins, there’s a bit of a new twist involved. Rather than requiring a minimum number of neighbors to unlock the coin purchase option, the Hot Rod Tractor can only be purchased with coins if you have a Mafia Wars account that’s at least level 10.

To be honest, this is a pretty ingenious cross-marketing strategy on Zynga’s part. Getting all of their FarmVille players hooked on Mafia Wars too could be a huge benefit for them. However, even if you don’t want to play Mafia Wars on a regular basis, it’s worth it to log in and work your way up to level 10. This won’t take you much time, and even if it’s not your thing, the game is pretty engaging on its own.

Quick Leveling in Mafia Wars

It can be a bit confusing logging into Mafia Wars for the first time, though. There’s a lot going on, and unlike other Zynga games like FishVille and CafĂ© World, Mafia Wars doesn’t quite follow the same layout as FarmVille. Nevertheless, you’ll be able to get the hang of it pretty quickly, especially if your goal is to merely reach level 10.

The key to leveling up quickly in Mafia Wars is making good use of your Energy. Just like in FarmVille, you have to earn Experience Points to level up, but in order to get those Experience Points, you have to do Jobs. You’ll have a few Jobs to choose from at the outset, and the number of those options will increase as you move up to new levels. What is constant about all of the Jobs, though, is that they all require Energy to complete.

Skill Points

Each time you reach a new level or master a Job (achieved by doing that job over and over again), you’ll be awarded some Skill Points. You’ll then be able to apply these Skill Points to different aspects of your character. If you were actually playing Mafia Wars long term, you might want to spread your Skill Points around by putting a few into each category.

When you’re just trying to level up quickly, however, all you want to do is dump all of your Skill Points into increasing your maximum Energy. With more energy, you can do more Jobs, level up quickly and unlock that Hot Rod Tractor. And who knows? You may wind up liking Mafia Wars a whole lot more than you expected.


Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Chicken Feedings and Mystery Eggs

Farmville Secrets

One fun new addition to FarmVille, the social networking game put out by Zynga, is the ability of players to feed their friends chickens and to collect Mystery Eggs as they do so. Ever since the Chicken Coops were introduced into FarmVille, players have occasionally been lucky enough to find Mystery Eggs when they were harvesting their coops. However, making Mystery Eggs discoverable in all of your friends’ coops makes these treasured items exponentially more available.

The Basics

Chicken Coops hold up to 20 chickens at once, and they can be harvested once every 24 hours. It’s during these harvestings that Mystery Eggs began to be discovered, and while they don’t actually provide any direct benefit to the discoverer, they can be hatched by the friends and neighbors of the person who found them.

Better Chickens, Better Eggs

The kind of chickens that can be found in the coops has a direct effect on the types of Mystery Eggs that are discovered. For example, a chicken coop with only normal white chickens in it can only produce white Mystery Eggs. If there is a Black or a Brown chicken introduced into the mix, though, the possibility will exist that a Black or Brown Mystery Egg could be found.

And of course, adding a Golden Chicken to a coop means that there will be a possibility of discovering a highly coveted Golden Mystery Egg. All Mystery Eggs contain a prize, of course, but the better the egg, the better the prize to be “hatched.”

Sharing the Discovery

As we touched on earlier, you won’t actually receive any benefit for finding a Mystery Egg. You will, however, be able to post an announcement of the find on your wall so that your friends can each hatch an egg to collect a prize. Of course, every time one of your friends finds a Mystery Egg, you’ll be able to try your hand at hatching it.

Feeding Chickens

For a while now, it’s been possible to fertilize some of your neighbors’ crops when you make your daily visit to their farms. This gives you the benefit of an extra opportunity to pick up Experience Points and also makes their harvesting more profitable in the Experience Point category as well. Now there’s an extra task waiting for you when you stop by your neighbors’ farms, though, and that’s feeding the chickens.

Like fertilizing crops, feeding your neighbors’ chickens earns you a coin and Experience Point Bonus. However, it also provides you with the opportunity to discover Mystery Eggs with each feeding. And the more often the chickens in a given coop are fed, the more likely they are to produce Mystery Eggs. Of course, this means that your friends will be more likely to find Mystery Eggs as well, giving you more chances to hatch one. And even if you don’t find a Mystery Egg when you’re harvesting your coop after your friends have fed your chickens, you’re likely to come away with a hefty coin bonus.


Thursday, January 14, 2010

Planning Your FarmVille Layout to Optimize Your Earnings

One of the main things that makes FarmVille so much fun to play is that there are really an endless number of possible ways you can arrange your farm. You can also rearrange things whenever you'd like, so you never have to be bored by coming back to the same old farm over and over again. (If only redecorating your own house was so easy.)

What appeals to your aesthetic taste isn't the only thing you should keep in mind when you're setting up your farm, however. How you arrange your buildings, decorations, animals, trees, and plowed plots of land can have a significant impact on how successful you ultimately will be in FarmVille. You should certainly choose a layout that makes you want to visit your farm often, but you need to take some more practical matters into consideration as well.

Space for Crops

By far, you'll be making most of your money off of the crops you plant and harvest. Because of this, you'll need to make sure you have plenty of space set aside for this purpose. Depending on the size of your farm, the actual percentage of land this entails will vary, but you should be careful not to cut your crop space down too much. Also, it's a good idea to group all of your plowed plots together to make it easier to harvest, plant, and plow with your farm equipment.

Building for Success

Getting some buildings up on your farm is a good way to make it feel like home. It's also a good way to earn a bunch of experience points at once and level up quickly – particularly at the higher levels. You'll only have so much space for buildings, however, so be sure and choose carefully when you go to buy them. Of course, buying the buildings just for the experience points and then turning around and selling them is always an option. You'll lose quite a bit of money this way, though, so it's not something you'll be able to do on a regular basis.


Trees are also a good source of supplemental income. Depending on how much time you're willing to spend harvesting them, you can pack quite a few trees into a pretty small space. You just want to make sure that your trees aren't obscuring any of the other items, plowed plots, or animals on your farm. It's easy to lose space to the shadow of a tree. That's why it's best to plant them mainly on the far edges of your farm. That way, you can enjoy their attractive appearance and coin earning potential while still being able to take advantage of all of the available land on your farm.


Animals are always nice to have around, but they can take up a lot of space too. If you want to make some money off of your farm animals while conserving space, you should focus on keeping chickens in a chicken coop and cows in dairy farms. These particular types of animals don't bring in a great deal of revenue individually, but keeping them in these structures allows you to harvest them all at once and saves you a ton of space that you can then devote to other things.


Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Helpful FarmVille Leveling Tips for the Higher Levels

When you first start playing FarmVille, it's pretty easy to accumulate enough experience points to move up to the next level. The number of experience points needed to advance at this stage of the game is not that high, and pretty much everything you do in the game earns you a few experience points. Plus, because you're trying to build your farm up quickly, you'll be earning extra experience points without even trying.

Once you get up to the higher levels, though, the experience point gaps between levels get bigger and the small bonuses you get for helping your neighbors and planting and plowing your fields are no longer enough to allow you to advance quickly. There are things you can do, however, to make it easier for yourself to move up.

Build, Build, Build

Since you probably have a pretty substantial farm, and thus a substantial and stable stream of income, you should have plenty of coins on hand. If this is the case, you will actually be able to “buy” your way to the higher levels buy purchasing buildings and other items. All of the items you buy give you experience points, but buildings provide the most by far.

Of course, you can only fit so many buildings on your farm at once. But as long as you have enough coins on hand, you can keep buying buildings and other items and then selling them at a reduced rate. You'll certainly lose quite a bit of money on the deal, but you'll gain a ton of experience points. Once money's no longer an issue for you, this is a good way to build up your experience points quickly.

Reevaluate Your Crops

Early in the game, you'll most likely be choosing crops that help you earn coins quickly. When you're trying to advance in the higher levels of game play, though, it's a good idea to reevaluate your crop selection. Shifting your emphasis from cash crops to crops that yield the most experience points per planting and per hour will have a significant impact on your ability to advance quickly.

Often this means going with the crops that take 1 day to grow. That's because these crops yield 2 experience points per planting, but take the minimum amount of time to grow for that level of experience earning potential. There are certainly other crops that offer the same experience bonuses, but they take longer to grow and so don't allow you to accumulate experience points as quickly.

Another option for seeds that may help you level up quickly are strawberries and blueberries. They only take 4 hours to grow, meaning that they only yield 1 experience point per growing cycle. But since the short growing time allows you to harvest and replant quickly, you have the potential to earn 2 experience points per plot of land every 4 hours – as long as you can get back to harvest them on time, that is. And of course, work with your neighbors to get as many of your crops fertilized as you can on a regular basis.